The Jam Goddess (heretofore referred to as me) and Sticky Minions (my occasional helpers) spend a lot of time sourcing ingredients and building relationships with local growers or importers, as well as growers who are farther afield. Jam Goddess fruits and berries come from Medicine Hat, Picture Butte, Kelowna, Osoyoos, Red Deer, Raymond, Bentley, and Cremona, as well as various crabapple trees in Calgary. Citrus of course, comes mostly from California. As much as is possible, ingredients are sourced locally. And every effort is made to use only Grade A fruit at the peak of ripeness.
Lavender grown in the Okanagan adds an elegance to peaches. Vanilla beans from Madagascar are the only thing that will do for Apricot Vanilla Jam and Vanilla Pear with Pine Nuts Jam. Habanero peppers which are grown in Alberta greenhouses or BC are used in a number of the hot jams and jellies. Green tomatoes come from wherever I can source them year to year.
Half the fun of making jam is meeting growers and suppliers. And sometimes, helping them find each other. My cousin recently moved into her in-laws home where 100 rhubarb plants were installed years ago as a ground cover. We picked 150 pounds one day and it looked like no one had ever been there. A local producer was looking for a large supply of rhubarb for pies and after we were done, they came and filled the back of a pick-up truck with the remainder. The moral of this story is do all you can so that as many people as possible get to have rhubarb pie.